All Hallows, Twickenham

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All Hallows Twickenham
All Hallows Parish Church in Twickenham.jpg
All Hallows Twickenham, as seen from the A316.
All Hallows Twickenham is located in England
All Hallows Twickenham
All Hallows Twickenham
51°27′15″N 0°20′02″W / 51.4541674°N 0.3338385°W / 51.4541674; -0.3338385Coordinates: 51°27′15″N 0°20′02″W / 51.4541674°N 0.3338385°W / 51.4541674; -0.3338385
OS grid reference TQ1575474169
Location Twickenham, London
Country United Kingdom
Denomination Church of England
Churchmanship Liberal Catholic
Former name(s) All Hallows Lombard Street[1]
St Martin's Mission Twickenham[1]
Dedication All Hallows
St Martin of Tours
Consecrated 9 November 1940[1]
Associated people Renatus Harris
John Wesley[2]
Status parish church
Architect(s) Robert Atkinson[1]
Christopher Wren[1]
Architectural type basilica
Style modern
Groundbreaking 11 July 1939[1][3]
Length 35 m (114 ft 10 in)
Width 17 m (55 ft 9 in)
Materials brick, stone
Parish All Hallows Twickenham
Deanery Hampton
Archdeaconry Middlesex
Diocese London (Kensington Area)
Province Canterbury
Vicar(s) The Revd Kevin Bell[4]
Reader(s) Charlotte Ryton, Susan Roberts [4]
Organist/Director of music Philip Booth[4]
Churchwarden(s) Kate Vintiner, Verena Stephen[5]
Parish administrator Alex Oliver, Susan Hoad[6]
Listed Building – Grade I
Official name Church of All Hallows
Designated 2 September 1952
Reference no. 1080836

All Hallows Twickenham is a grade I listed[7] church and parish of the Church of England in Twickenham, London. It is located prominently on Chertsey Road (A316), a major road artery of West London, near Twickenham Stadium.

History and description[edit]

The church is the continuation of Christopher Wren's All Hallows Lombard Street, in the City of London, which was demolished in 1939 and its stone square tower, bells, stone cloister, and interior fittings and furnishings moved to the new site in Twickenham.[1]

The church is also a continuation of St Martin's Mission Church, which had stood about half a mile to the south since 1914. The site of the former chapel was at the southern end of Whitton Road, beside Heatham House, and is now the location of the local beekeepers' association. St Martin's was a mission of the parish of St Mary the Virgin, Twickenham. In 1933, it became a conventional district with its own priest in charge, Harold Schofield. The modern parish of All Hallows is founded on St Martin's district, and had Schofield as its first vicar.[1][3]

The church was designed by Robert Atkinson, a modern build based on Wren's original plans for All Hallows Lombard Street. The foundation stone was laid by the Bishop of London, Arthur Winnington-Ingram, on 11 July 1939, and the new church was consecrated on 9 November 1940 by his successor Geoffrey Fisher. During its consecration, air-raid precautions were in place and anti-aircraft gun fire could be heard in the distance, leading Bishop Fisher to say, "churches are being destroyed by agencies more unnatural and vile than the Great Fire [which had destroyed All Hallows Lombard Street]".[3]

The main body of the church is a brick-built basilica with a narthex leading through the cloister to the old tower to the north, and to St Martin's Chapel to the south. The original Wren tower houses a peal of ten bells, including some of those that were originally hung at St Dionis Backchurch, then at Lombard Street, before coming to Twickenham. The bells are maintained by the Whitechapel Bell Foundry.[8] Just inside the tower a massive oak gateway is preserved; it had been placed at the Lombard Street entrance to the old church after the Great Fire of London, and is decorated with skulls and crossbones.[2]

In the body of the church are many furnishings brought from Lombard Street. Much of the carved woodwork is thought likely to be the work of Grinling Gibbons, showing traces of his style. The great reredos is probably his work; it is quite similar to his known work at St Mary Abchurch. Its dimensions were included in Wren's plans, its carving original 17th-century work, but the paintings are from its renovation in 1870. At the centre of the reredos is a carved, gilded pelican feeding her young from her own flesh (a traditional image of Christ who feeds his followers with himself in Communion). The altar comes from St Martin's Mission Church (the altar from Lombard Street now stands in St Martin's Chapel at the south end of the narthex). Behind the choir stalls, which flank the chancel, are two wrought-iron sword rests for the ceremonial sword of the Lord Mayor of London.[3] The large wooden, carved, chalice-shaped pulpit with large sounding board was also brought from Lombard Street. The most famous regular preacher to have occupied it was John Wesley, who is recorded as preaching from it on 28 December 1789, and it is known to be where he preached his first ex tempore sermon.[2] The pews date from 1870, when the church in Lombard Street was refurbished. The baptismal font at the west doors of the basilica comes from St Benet Gracechurch. Its marble base is decorated with carvings of cherubs, and its tall wooden cover is topped by the figure of Charity welcoming children. The church has an organ built by Renatus Harris in 1695, which is installed in the western gallery, a position it did not occupy in Lombard Street, but in accord to Wren's plans for it. Beneath are the churchwardens' box pews, one decorated with a lion, the other with a unicorn, the royal supporters.[3]


Services are held every Sunday at 8.30 (Book of Common Prayer), at 10.00 parish communion and at 11.30 (especially for families with small children). Services are occasionally held on Sunday evenings at 18.30 (evensong). Daily prayers are said morning and evening and there is a said Eucharist every Wednesday at 9.30.

An adjacent 1960s built hall is used extensively by the local community, and also by Little Wren's nursery school (see

The large car park is usually made available to those visiting the adjacent Twickenham Rugby Stadium for matches and events. Profits go towards the maintenance of the church.

Charitable status[edit]

The Parochial Church Council of All Hallows is a charity registered with the Charity Commission.[9]


  1. ^ a b c d e f g h All Hallows Twickenham: History
  2. ^ a b c Reynolds, Herbert (1922). "All Hallows, Lombard Street". The Churches of the City of London. London: John Lane. pp. 120–1. 
  3. ^ a b c d e Pendock, Joe (2003). "A History of All Hallows Church, Twickenham, and its Building". 
  4. ^ a b c All Hallows Twickenham: Who's who
  5. ^ All Hallows Twickenham: PCC
  6. ^ All Hallows Twickenham: Contact us
  7. ^ Historic England. "Church of All Hallows (1080836)". National Heritage List for England. Retrieved 1 February 2016. 
  8. ^ All Hallows Twickenham: The All Hallows Bells
  9. ^ "1132111 – The Parochial Church Council of the Ecclesiastical Parish of All Hallows Twickenham". Charity overview. Charity Commission. Retrieved 6 February 2016.